Torihama Shell Midden

Wasaka, Fukui

Torihama is a Jomon site that was located on a small hill close to rivers and a lake. The shell midden is dated to the Early Jomon period (4000 BC to 2500 BC). It is thought that the settlement changed over time from a temporary nut-gathering camp to a sedentary village with pit houses like the two recreated dwellings shown here. People ate walnuts, chestnuts, various plants, fish, and shellfish. Man-made objects included the remains of pit houses and storage pits; hard-glazed fragments of pottery; ropes and woven cloth; and all sorts of tools and implements made of stone, bone, antler, and wood: lacquered combs, dugout canoes with paddles, bows, arrows, axes, scoops, harpoons, and fish-spears. In this place, it was good to be Jomon.